Text Size

+ -

Former Coach Ray Bauer receives a Special Basketball Game

Ray was born and grew up in Pittsburgh, PA. After high school graduation in 1943, he enlisted in the United States Army Air Corps. While enlisted he met his wife to be Rita. He attained the rank of Staff Sergeant as a drill instructor and MP. After WWII, Ray took advantage of the GI bill and attended Slippery Rock College (now Slippery Rock University) in Pennsylvania. He graduated with a degree in physical education and began pursuing a coaching and teaching career. Ray married his wife, Rita, and had two sons, Bruce and Jim.

Ray’s first position was coach and athletic director at a small reform school south of Pittsburgh. He went on to take a teaching position at Snowden High School in Pittsburgh, PA. At Snowden, Ray was one of only two coaches at the small school. He served as the assistant football and head basketball coach. During Ray’s time at Snowden, the teams he led won many conference championships.

Ray left Snowden High School to take a position at Bethel Park High School, in the south suburbs of Pittsburgh, serving as chairman of the social studies department as well as head basketball coach. During Ray’s time at Snowden the basketball teams won many league championships.

In 1969, Ray returned to his roots at Snowden High School, now known as South Park High School, this time as head basketball coach and athletic director. He eventually hired his son Bruce as the assistant coach, where they coached side by side. They worked together to reestablish a basketball program that had fallen on hard times. After rebuilding the program, Ray stepped back to work in administration and served as athletic director while Bruce assumed the responsibility of head coach.

At South Park High School Ray started the boys and girls track program, established the girls’ basketball program and laid the critical groundwork for a swimming program. He was a long standing and active member of the Pennsylvania Athletic Directors Association, helping to drive the profession forward. Ray’s work on both a personal and professional level within the organizations he was a part raised the quality of athletics for those organizations and the athletes within those programs.

After 33 years, Ray retired from the public school system and went on to become the athletic director at La Roche College, a Catholic university in Pittsburgh. At La Roche he helped upgrade the men’s basketball program and establish the women’s basketball and volleyball programs.

“My father was my coach and mentor. Everything he did was with honesty, integrity and to the best of his ability. Those are the traits I have tried to pass on to my daughters and their children,” said Bruce Bauer, Ray’s son.

In the 1992, Ray and Rita moved to Raleigh to be closer to Bruce and his family.

After Rita passed in 2003, Ray continued to live in the Raleigh area. In 2015 he moved to Carillon Assisted Living in Southport where Bruce and his wife now live. Eventually Ray moved into Carillon’s Garden Place where Fe, a personal care assistant at Carillon and college ball player, developed a personal relationship with Ray by referring to him as coach.

On July 8, with Fe’s encouragement, Carillon’s Executive Director June, and team members Tonya Jasmin and Davina Schmidt and their families decided to honor Ray with a “Ray Bauer basketball game” and recognize Ray’s life achievement as an athletic coach and administrator who impacted so many young lives.

The Ray Bauer basketball game was boys versus girls. The players on the boy’s team include: Darian and Brandon (sons of Tonya Jasmin), Ben, Levi and Kaleb, friends of the family. Players on the girl’s team include: Lola and Kodi (Davina Schmidt’s daughters), Zara and Zoey (Tonya Jasmin’s daughters) Carly and Jada. Fe, personal care assistant at Carillon who plays college ball, also participated in the game.

“I am happy to be the announcer for this game and for all of us to come together and play as a team to honor Ray, his life work and his passion as a coach, athletic director and administrator. To do this for a fellow resident is wonderful,” said Bud Boothe, a fellow resident of Ray at Carillon Assisted Living of Southport.

FOX10 News | WALA

Posted in Sage Stories Tagged , , , , , , , on July 15, 2016

Back to Blog